There is a vast amount of research that indicates skimping on sleep can negatively affect your health in numerous ways. What scientists are also discovering is that oversleeping may also hinder efforts to lead a healthy and happy life. Understanding the root causes of sleeping too much and the hazards of oversleeping can help you to make smarter decisions about the amount of sleep to aim for each night.
Effects of oversleeping
The occasional night of getting too much sleep is not going to cause significant harm to your health. Sometimes the body simply needs to catch up on a sleep deficit. However, chronic oversleeping can lead to a variety of negative health repercussions, affecting both your physical and mental well-being.
Here are a few of the most common negative effects of sleeping too much.
According to a study published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, too much sleep can age your brain by up to two years. This accelerated aging may make it more challenging to perform normal tasks. For example, too much sleep may lead to a foggy brain and memory issues.
Gain excess weight
Excess weight gain is also associated with too much sleep. One of the reasons for this link is that those who are sleep too much are also not exercising as they should. The less that you are moving your body, the more likely you will be to put on excess weight.
Higher risk of heart disease
As heart disease is the number one killer in the US, it is important to do everything that you can to stave off its development. Sleeping more than eight hours per night boosts your risk of dying from heart disease by a significant 34 percent.
Emotional Health Issues
It is not a stretch to see that sleeping too much may contribute to depression or anxiety. It can be difficult to break the cycle of depression and excess sleep, making it important to stay on top of this issue.
Boost in Mortality Risks
All of these problems associated with too much sleep can lead to a higher mortality rate. Studies have demonstrated that people who sleep too much are also more likely to die prematurely.
Higher Rates of Diabetes
Too much sleep can increase blood sugar levels in the body, leading to an increase in developing type 2 diabetes.
What is the Ideal Sleep Time?
While the sleep needs of an individual can vary based on a number of factors, there is a widely accepted golden zone of rest that is suitable for most people. It is also important to note that sleep needs vary as you age. Clearly, younger children need more sleep than adults. Seniors tend to require slightly less sleep than other adults. For most adults age 18-64, the ideal amount of sleep falls in the seven-to-nine hours per night range. Striving to reach this goal each night will result in optimal health and help you to avoid the hazards of oversleeping.